My husband usually helps me one evening during Christmas or on a weekend. I really didn't feel like doing it at night; plus our weekends are booked until Christmas. I'd done a couple batches in the past by myself so I knew I could do it.
I locked up the animals so no one would get underfoot, located a fire extinguisher (not that I've ever set anything on fire while making almond roca; but better to be safe) and put the phone and remote near me. I unwrapped all the butter, opened the sugar, had the toasted almonds in a bowl next to me and a measuring cup. I set out the cookie sheets and the roll of foil and prepped cooling areas for the hot candy.
You would think it was harder without help. My husband usually does all the prep work: moving the candy around, finding places to put the hot stuff, replacing the foil in the cookie sheets, scooping sugar into the measuring cup. But I got into a routine and was able to control it all myself with no disasters. I enjoyed myself and ten batches and two hours later I was done.
It turned out to be a bit easier to do it alone. I had the TV on for distraction, I didn't have to remind anyone to get anything ready for me, I didn't have to yell at anyone to get out of my way the hot candy was coming through, no one was trying to get food out of the kitchen while I was working on the candy.
You would think I just eliminated one of our family bonding Christmas traditions. But I've always been the only one to actually cook the candy part anyway; so the only thing I eliminated was extra people while I was cooking. After the candy part of the almond roca cools, it has to be frosted and patted with walnuts and cut up that's when the real family bonding begins anyway. What family doesn't bond over a bowlful of melted chocolate?
I ground walnuts and kept melted chocolate available for them. The kids frosted and put the walnuts on and my husband cut and found places for the candy to dry. We had fun and no fuss. I was a lot more relaxed than I usually am.
I guess sometimes we have to do things alone.We still had our family tradition and I built muscle one batch at a time.